Estate and Succession Planning for Businesses

Business Estate and Succession Planning

A stable and growing business is what every serious entrepreneur desires, but what about your company’s long-term future? After devoting much time, money, and effort to the creation and operation of your business, you’ll want to ensure a smooth succession process. Whether you’re selling it, passing it down to the next generation or closing it down, it’s important that you take the necessary steps to shape your business’s future in accordance with your needs. If you’re planning to sell, how can you get the most value for what you’ve built while enabling a successful transition of ownership? If retirement is on the horizon, who is best suited to take the wheel and bring the company to new heights? How can you protect your family, your personal assets and your business should you pass away? Whatever the circumstances, a smart exit strategy will make all the difference for you, your family and your business. The following are some estate and succession planning tips for business owners. 

Separate your Personal and Business Assets:

Without proper estate and succession planning, when you die default directives are applied that essentially lump your business assets in with all other assets you own. Your beneficiaries may be required to pay significantly more tax than necessary and the survival of your business may be threatened. To avoid this scenario, draft essential documents to separate your personal from your business possessions and make your wishes clear. 

    • A buy-sell agreement allows business stakeholders to retain or assume control of the business itself while letting you pass on the value of your stake to your personal beneficiaries. This type of agreement makes for less stressful outcomes for all concerned.
    • Powers of Attorney for your business interests/activities: These may differ from those authorized to administer your personal affairs.
    • A business succession plan: You may transfer your business outright to a beneficiary or set up a trust that can be used to control the assets of the business. 

Establish Estate Planning Asset Protection:

To do this you take nonexempt assets subject to creditors’ claims and reposition them as exempt assets through techniques such as family limited liability companies and irrevocable trusts for your spouse, children and other beneficiaries.

Undertake Estate Tax Planning:

In order to minimize the tax burden of settling your estate, there are estate planning concepts that can be applied to potentially taxable areas including RRSPs, RRIFs, and capital gains on real estate and shares.

Transferring the ownership and management of a company is a personally and professionally delicate process. Without skillful planning, a number of issues and mistakes are prone to arise. Revising and updating your succession and estate plan regularly is crucial. Constantly amend your plan for changes in desire and the current business environment. Everything is more achievable when you’re well-prepared and involve the right help. Talk to your Chartered Professional Accountant. They have the expertise, knowledge and experience to help you create and maintain a successful succession and estate plan for your business. Businesses deserve nothing less than to feel comfortable every step of the way.

 

Need help with business succession and estate planning? Looking for business advice? Contact Cook and Company Chartered Professional Accountants. We are based out of Calgary, Alberta, serving clients across Canada and the United States. We provide high-quality tax, assurance and succession planning services for a wide variety of privately-owned and managed companies. We possess a detailed and tactful understanding of business succession planning and its many moving parts. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

The Benefits of a Holding Company

Benefits of a Holding Company

The Canadian taxation system allows for the establishment of holding companies. The registration process is the same as any other company. You can register at a regional or federal level. If you wish your company to have an official name, ensure that the proposed name is available for use by doing a search through  NUANS. Your corporation can alternatively be recognized by a unique number assigned to it by Corporations Canada.

What is a holding company?

A holding company is an entity created for the purpose of gathering various assets under one umbrella (real estate, shares, stocks, GICs, term deposits, bonds, other companies). This type of company doesn’t conduct any operations, ventures, or other active tasks for itself. There are several types of holding companies (pure, mixed, immediate, intermediate).       

  • A Pure holding company is formed for the sole purpose of owning stock in other companies.
  • A Mixed holding company (also known as a holding-operating company) not only controls another firm but also engages in its own operations. 
  • An Immediate holding company is one that retains voting stock or control of another company, in spite of the fact that the company itself is already controlled by another entity. 
  • An Intermediate holding company is a firm that is both a holding company of another entity and a subsidiary of a larger corporation.

What are the advantages of having a holding company in Canada?

  • Increased Asset Protection: A holding company helps keep assets safe from creditors in the event that something happens to the operating company. The operating company can take risks without exposing the holding company because the holding company performs no transactions and therefore does not move cash and other assets. The only risk is the extent of the holding company’s investment in the operating company. 
  • Tax Benefits:  Since dividends between Canadian-controlled private corporations (owned by the same person) are tax-free, you can move money from an operating company to a holding company with no negative tax consequences. 
  • Lock in the Capital Gains Exemption: There are specific criteria that need to be met to claim the Lifetime Capital Gains Exemption (LCGE).  A holding company can help business owners meet these criteria.
  • Estate planning: Shares in an operating company can be transferred to younger family members through a holding company by way of an estate freeze that is structured to cap a person’s tax liability upon his or her death and transfer any future growth to family members.
  • Limited Liability:  Companies frequently get sued by employees (wrongful termination), by suppliers and vendors (breach of contract) and by customers (product liability). Holding companies can protect an individual’s personal assets, shielding the individual from debt liabilities, lawsuits, and other risks. 

What are the disadvantages of having a holding company in Canada?  

  • Costs: Holding companies require set-up costs (incorporation fee, lawyers fee) and yearly compliance expenses (financial statements, corporate tax returns).
  • Complexity: A holding company adds a level of complexity that requires reliance on professionals. 

Holding companies are not right for all organizations. If your business is accumulating excess cash and you’re looking to invest, incorporating a holding company may be the right decision for you. Establishing a holding company is complex, so consult a Chartered Professional Accountant to discuss the pros and cons. Ideally, a holding company provides tax savings, helps you reach your estate planning goals, assists in growing your business, provides asset protection and limits your liability.

Interested in establishing a holding company? Looking for business advice? Contact Cook and Company Chartered Professional Accountants. We are based out of Calgary, Alberta, serving clients across Canada and the United States. We provide high-quality tax, assurance and succession planning services for a wide variety of privately-owned and managed companies. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

 

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Succession Planning for Small Businesses

Succession Planning for Small Businesses

Planning can be overwhelming! Because of this, sometimes we avoid planning or we do it quickly and poorly. Small business succession planning is particularly difficult as it’s complex, people are often resistant to change and there’s potential for conflict. But no one stays in the same position forever. Illness, retirement and/or turnover are inevitable. If a company fails to plan, knowledge may be lost, opportunities missed and clients delayed. Succession planning provides a business with a framework that ensures continuity when change occurs. 

What is succession planning?

Succession planning is a process of identifying and developing future leaders/owners of your company. This strategy prepares your business for all contingencies by training high-quality people for advancement. It ensures that your business continues to run smoothly after key people retire, resign, move on to other opportunities or pass away. This process involves the coaching and development of designated successors.

Why develop a succession plan?

There are multiple benefits and reasons for succession planning for your business. 

  • Lower hiring costs
  • Stronger internal hires
  • Shorter vacancies for key positions
  • Better career development
  • Increased employee engagement
  • Higher performance
  • Increased retention
  • Higher job satisfaction
  • Disaster-proofs the business
  • Identifies the most-qualified future leaders
  • Creates a structure for training and development
  • Maintains brand identity
  • Helps a company plan for the long-term

Phases of succession planning:

  • Phase One/Identification: Establish who you are as a company and what you want. Then, consider all key roles in your organization determining the day-to-day import of each position and the impact that would occur if that position was suddenly vacant. Identify multiple candidates for each position (a short list) and teach them the values, guidelines and vision of the business.
  • Phase two/selection: This is where a specific candidate is chosen for each role. The successor may be the person next in line in the organizational chart but may also be a promising employee from another position. Look for those who display the skills necessary to survive and thrive in the new post. Objectively consider your shortlist for performance, skills and emotional intelligence. Choose a candidate who is a lifelong learner and both self and socially aware.
  • Phase three/training: This phase involves scheduled professional development for the chosen successor(s). This may include job rotation (for knowledge and experience), mentoring in soft skills (communication, interpersonal relations, empathy, diplomacy), position shadowing and/or taking over when the person presently in the role is on vacation. 
  • Phase four/transition: This involves the present position holder retiring/stepping down and the chosen successor formally taking the role. 

Succession planning keeps a business moving forward, prepares a company for inevitable changes, assists in retaining strong performers and supports the continuity critical to a company’s future. A succession plan is a good idea at the start-up, growth and maturity stages of a company. It’s worth the investment of time and effort.

Need help with a succession plan for your company? Looking for business advice? Contact Cook and Company Chartered Professional Accountants. We are based out of Calgary, Alberta, serving clients across Canada and the United States. We provide high-quality tax, assurance and succession planning services for a wide variety of privately-owned and managed companies. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

 

References

RRSP Basics you Should Know

RRSP basics

RRSPs are one of the best methods of saving for retirement. However, many people do not fully understand this form of investment. The following are some basics you need to know about RRSPs. 

What is an RRSP?

A Registered Retirement Savings Plan is a sheltered account provided by the Canadian government to assist Canadians in saving for retirement. Contributions are tax-deductible and earnings are tax-sheltered. Contributors delay the payment of taxes until retirement, when their tax rate is lower than during their working years. 

How much can I contribute?

The holder of an RRSP can contribute 18% of their yearly income, up to their annual contribution limit. You can find your limit on your Notice of Assessment from the Canada Revenue Agency.

When should I start contributing to an RRSP?

There is no minimum age for beginning an RRSP. As long as you have employment income and file a tax return, you may set up and contribute to an RRSP. 

What investments can I hold in an RRSP?

  • Mutual funds
  • Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs)
  • GICs
  • Stocks/Equities (both Canadian and foreign)
  • Certain shares of small business and venture capital corporations
  • Options, REITs, coins.
  • Cash
  • Investment-grade gold and silver bullion
  • Treasury bills (T-bills)
  • Bonds (government, corporate and strip bonds)
  • Canadian mortgages
  • Mortgage-backed securities
  • Income trusts

What investments are not allowed to be held in an RRSP?

  • Precious metals
  • Personal property such as art, antiques and gems
  • Commodity futures contracts

Where can I open an RRSP account?

  • Banks and trust companies
  • Credit unions and caisses populaires (cooperative, member-owned financial institutions)
  • Mutual fund companies
  • Investment firms (for self-directed RRSPs)
  • Life insurance companies

What happens when I turn 71?

In the year you turn 71, you need to convert or collapse your RRSP by converting it to an RRIF (Registered Retirement Income Fund), purchase an annuity or both. 

Things you should know:

  • Unused contribution room carries over indefinitely. 
  • You can set up a recurring transfer from your chequing to your RRSP so you won’t be left scrambling to find money to contribute.
  • First-time homebuyers can make a tax-free RRSP withdrawal of up to $35,000 to purchase a home through the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP). You have 15 years to make equal installment contributions back to your RRSP to replace the funds you withdrew.
  • With the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP), you or your spouse can withdraw up to $10,000 in a year to further your education, with a total limit of $20,000 over four years. Once your education is complete, you’ll repay 1/10 of the total amount you withdrew, every year, until it’s fully repaid.

 

For most Canadians, an RRSP is the most tax-effective investment they can make. Contribute to your RRSP while in a high tax bracket to get immediate tax savings, then pay taxes on withdrawals from the plan while in a lower tax bracket. 

Looking for business and investment advice? Contact Cook and Company Chartered Professional Accountants. We are based out of Calgary, Alberta, serving clients across Canada and the United States. We provide high-quality tax, assurance and succession planning services for a wide variety of privately-owned and managed companies. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

Advantages of Hiring a Bookkeeper

Advantages of Hiring a Bookkeeper

Business owners need accurate, up-to-date financial information in order to make good business decisions, maintain CRA compliance, support readiness in case of an audit and provide preparedness for the possible future sale of the company. Keeping track of business transactions and ensuring accurate books is complex and time-consuming. A bookkeeper can help. 

What are the duties and responsibilities of a bookkeeper?

A bookkeeper is a person whose job is to keep records of the financial affairs of a business. He/she undertakes a variety of tasks including:

  • Recording the financial transactions of your business (incoming and outgoing) and posting them to various accounts
  • Processing payments
  • Conducting daily banking activities
  • Developing a system for organizing sales, purchases, payments and receipts
  • Identifying trends and how they apply to your business
  • Producing various financial reports
  • Reconciling reports to third-party records such as bank statements
  • Providing a complete set of year-to-date accounting records
  • Supplying information regarding the performance of your business

Advantages of hiring a bookkeeper:

  • Saves you time: Bookkeeping tasks are time-consuming and tedious. Hiring a bookkeeper relieves you of these duties, allowing you to dedicate your time to growing your business. 
  • Saves you money: The cost of outsourcing your bookkeeping is usually less than employing a full-time bookkeeper. A bookkeeper’s detailed records will save you money by reducing the time your CPA needs to analyze your accounts.
  • Prevents errors: Mistakes are costly. Having a bookkeeper means your books are up-to-date, organized and accurate. 
  • Eases budget creation: A bookkeeper will examine your revenue and expenses, providing you with budget tips that help reduce spending, assist in efficient business operations and contribute to profitability.
  • Enables better business decisions: By identifying spending patterns and sales trends, providing forecasts of seasonal ups and downs, recognizing money-making opportunities, avoiding cash-flow problems and finding ways to increase income and/or decrease spending, a bookkeeper provides you with the information you need to make good decisions for your business.
  • Contributes to effortless tax season:  A bookkeeper provides up-to-date accounting records and a year-end financial statement making it easier to prepare accurate and complete tax returns and avoid tax penalties.
  • Allows maximum tax deductions: Proper bookkeeping allows you to take advantage of all possible input tax credits and deductions. 
  • Ensures compliance with the law: A good bookkeeper complies with the latest legal regulations and remains up to date with recent legal changes. 
  • Provides audit preparedness: Accurate and up-to-date records ensure a smooth audit process. 
  • Promotes ease of securing loans and/or investments: It’s easier to secure capital when you’re able to clearly outline your business’s performance and financial position. 
  • Reduces risk: A good bookkeeper can detect fraud and/or embezzlement, helping you spot suspicious business transactions.  

Businesses benefit from the assistance of a qualified, professional bookkeeper. These professionals help companies through all stages of start-up and growth.

Need professional bookkeeping and accounting services? Looking for business advice? Contact Cook and Company Chartered Professional Accountants. We are based out of Calgary, Alberta, serving clients across Canada and the United States. We provide high-quality tax, assurance and succession planning services for a wide variety of privately-owned and managed companies. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

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Fraud Tips for Business Owners

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All businesses are susceptible to fraud, though small and mid-sized businesses are the most common victims. These companies are targeted as they often have few preventative policies in place. Though it’s impossible to be fully protected, there are proactive steps that you can take to minimize exposure to fraud risks.

 

Types of fraud: Fraud comes in many forms from both inside and outside a business.

  • Internal Fraud: Employee theft is a common source of fraud (lost inventory, unethical accounting, theft of financial assets, fake expenses, overinflated commissions).
  • External Fraud: Customer fraud (counterfeit bills, bad cheques, stolen credit cards, fraudulent requests for refunds/returns), third-party contractor fraud (overbilling, fee schemes, failure to deliver) and computer fraud (hacking, information theft, data mining) are the most common types of external fraud.

 

Ways to reduce fraud: There are many policies and practices that can help to reduce the possibility of fraud in your business.

    • Create a fraud policy that covers topics such as what actions constitute fraud, how to report suspected fraud, who is responsible for investigating fraud, and confidentiality. Clearly outline your expectations related to employee conduct and the consequences for violating these policies.
    • Provide education for all employees (security awareness, fraud policy understanding). Make sure they are aware of the need to create secure passwords, that they change passwords often and to keep passwords safe. Inform them of the importance of phishing awareness and remind staff about the dangers of clicking on unexpected links and attachments.
    • Limit file access: Give employees access to only those files that are necessary to do their job. Require more than one person to complete key tasks (approving payments, writing cheques, managing petty cash, processing client receivables, approving overtime claims, recording in the accounting system).
    • Protect bank accounts and credit cards: Create separate bank and credit card accounts for your personal life and business. Check security systems your bank uses for online banking to be sure automatic logout is available. Ensure that your credit card provider has suitable fraud protections in place, such as automatic alerts if an employee spends over a certain amount. Limit how and with whom you share confidential banking information.
    • Keep detailed and accurate records: Accurate, detailed record-keeping (accounting records, inventory controls) helps shield your business from fraudulent activities.
    • Go paperless: Going digital reduces access to information, enables fraud preventive accounting controls, permits authorization limitations and creates an easy to trace audit trail.
    • Fine-tune payroll procedures: Ensure that payroll processes require HR and your payroll company to confirm deposit accounts with employees. Pay using direct deposit or open a separate business account to minimize circulation of your company’s bank account information. Use regular audits to keep check for falsified hours, inflated commissions, and other irregularities.
    • Use secure payment methods: Switch to direct deposit or fund transfers. Encrypt payment transactions and partner with a secure payment processor. Consider a cheque imaging solution (scanning or picture taking) making it possible for you to deposit money automatically.
    • Audit high-risk areas often: A daily check of accounts and statements is a great way to protect against fraud or accounting errors. Routinely audit areas of your business that deal in cash, refunds, product returns, inventory management and accounting functions.
  • Establish a thorough hiring process: Check each new hire’s references and previous employers. Do a criminal check, especially for those employees who handle cash, manage payments and have access to bank account information. Use a reputable service that specializes in pre-employment screening.
  • Keep your point-of-sale secure: Make sure all your POS devices are digitally secure. Install passwords and change them regularly. Choose systems that come with end-to-end encryption. Don’t connect your POS to external networks. At the end of each day, account for every POS device and secure devices in a location that only select employees can access.
  • Know who you’re dealing with: Record basic information about the businesses/clients you deal with (address, name, two phone numbers, references). Check who the owners are and how long they have been in business. Search the company’s name online with the term “scam” or “complaint.” Before engaging with suppliers, ask for recommendations from other business owners in your community.
  • Invest in insurance to help with the recovery of some or all of your losses in the event of fraud. Consult with an insurance specialist for help evaluating possible risks and determining what kind of insurance will best suit your business.
  • Get expert advice: You don’t have to figure it all out by yourself! Talk to a small business advisor and/or a commercial banking consultant about products and services to help prevent fraud.
  • Enable whistleblowing: Create a system that enables employees to anonymously report tips essential to dealing with fraud.
  • Update all devices to the latest security software, web browsers, and operating systems. Use antivirus software, anti-malware and firewalls.
  • Create a mobile device action plan to encrypt data. Make sure each employee has a separate user account, so you can trace activity if there’s a problem.
  • Back up critical business data and store the information in the cloud.
  • Secure Wi-Fi networks with Service Set Identifier (SSID) and password protection.

 

It’s easy to put off fraud prevention until an issue arises. Be proactive! By taking a few simple steps to put a fraud prevention plan into action, you’ll protect your business, establish a culture of zero-tolerance for fraud and help mitigate unforeseen threats in the future.

 

 

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Why do I Need a Financial Statement for my Business?

Why do I Need a Financial Statement for my Business? - Cook & Co - Professional Accountants - Featured Image

Financial statements are records that communicate the activities and the financial performance of a business. They generally include a balance sheet, an income statement and a cash flow statement. They indicate:

  • How much money is made
  • How much money is spent
  • What the company owns
  • What the company owes
  • The net value of the business
  • Where the money came from and where it went
  • The amount of money kept in the company

Companies generally hire an accountant to prepare their financial statements then use the reports as a management tool to affect positive change within their organization. There are several reasons why a business needs financial statements:

  • For performance measurement: Financial statements provide a gauge of performance that helps you review the success of your business and communicate your past, present, and future prospects to stakeholders. It allows you to assess management’s stewardship of the company, the viability of the business and is a starting point in forecasting future performance.
  • For loan applications/investors: Many lenders will not consider a loan application without up to date financial reports. The information in a financial statement forms the foundation of a bank’s decision whether to fund a venture or a company. A business can use financial statements to persuade an investor to buy into the company, or to attract a venture partner who can put money into a new project.
  • For the CRA: In order to file corporate tax returns, Canadian corporations are required to produce financial statements. To avoid penalties, a company needs to have financial statements prepared on a yearly basis.
  • For regulating cash flow: Financial statements help a business anticipate borrowing needs. Reviewing your statements can reveal trends your business can use in its cash flow strategies.
  • For decision making: Financial statements provide decision-makers within a company with the up-to-date information necessary to make effective choices. Financial reports are used to provide shareholders, partners and/or potential investors with key business metrics.

 

Start your business off with the correct financial statements and a maintenance plan for keeping them in order. These reports will assist you when measuring the value of your company,  applying for a loan, attracting investors and/or selling your business. They are a powerful diagnostic tool you can use to evaluate your firm’s strengths and weaknesses, helping you chart the way forward. Talk to your accountant about the statements that your business needs. They will have the knowledge, experience and expertise to help you with your financial statements.

Need help with your company’s financial statements? Contact Cook and Company Chartered Professional Accountants. Whether you operate a sole proprietorship or a sizable corporation with multiple subsidiaries, Cook and Company uses their experience and expertise to help your business. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

Can I get Tax Benefits for Insurance I offer my Employees?

Can I get Tax Benefits for Insurance I offer my Employees? - Cook and Co - Calgary Accountants - Featured Image

Employers may choose to offer life, health and/or disability insurance to their employees. Should your business offer these benefits? Will your company’s insurance expenses be tax deductible?

 

  • Group Life insurance is term insurance with your company holding the master contract and coverage extending to your employees. It’s relatively inexpensive and usually garners high participation among employees. If a life insurance policy is owned by your employees, but the premiums are paid by your company, you may deduct the premiums against business income as long as the premiums are a reasonable business expense. If you have shared ownership of the policy with your employees, the premiums are not tax-deductible.

 

  • Group Health insurance plans provide coverage (supplemental to government health care plans) for a company’s employees at a reduced cost. If the health insurance policy is owned by your employees, but the premiums are paid by your company, you may deduct the premiums against business income as long as the premiums are a reasonable business expense. Premiums are not deductible if paid for shareholders who are not employees.

 

  • Group Disability insurance provides a percentage of pre-disability income (for a specified period of time) when an employee is unable to work due to illness or injury. Typically employers purchase plans that cover 50 to 60 percent of income. Disability insurance premiums are paid with after-tax dollars, but the benefits are received tax-free.

 

As business insurance issues are complex and convoluted, talk to your accountant before claiming a tax deduction for life, health or disability insurance premiums offered to your employees.

Not sure whether you can claim the life, health and/or disability insurance premiums you offer your employees, contact Cook and Company Accountants. Whether you operate a sole proprietorship or a sizable corporation with multiple subsidiaries, Cook and Company use their experience, knowledge and expertise to help your business. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

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What to expect if your Business is Audited by the Canadian Revenue Agency

What to expect if your Business is Audited by the Canadian Revenue Agency - Cook & Co - Accountants in Calgary - Featured Image

A tax audit is a detailed examination of a business’ books and records by the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA). It’s conducted after you’ve received a notice of assessment and is intended to check that your records support your tax return. Audits are meant to ensure that the Canadian tax system is fair for all.

How does the CRA choose a file for audit?

From 2017 to 2019 an average of 5,900 audits of small businesses and 1,800 audits of medium-sized businesses were undertaken each year. These files are chosen for audit based on a risk assessment; factors such as frequency of errors on tax returns, indication of non-compliance with tax obligations and comparison to similar files. If your file is identified as high risk, a CRA officer will review information from a variety of sources to determine whether they should go forward with an audit.

What are the most common issues that prompt an audit?

For small and medium sized businesses the CRA may consider an audit if they discover:

  •   Multiple or repeated errors on your tax returns
  •   Major changes in income or expenses
  •   Repeated losses
  •   Expenses not in line with others in your industry
  •   Under-reported earnings
  •   Over large charitable donations
  •   Unsubstantiated home office deductions
  •   Discrepancies between GST returns and Tax returns
  •   Shareholder loans that should be considered income
  •   Missing information
  •   Audit of a related party
  •   A lifestyle incongruent with your declared income
  •   Real estate transactions
  •   Vehicle expenses
  •   Informant tips

What is the procedure for an audit?

A CRA auditor will contact you by mail or phone and set a date, time and location for the audit. A review may be held at your place of business, your representative’s/accountant’s office or at a CRA office. You’ll receive the agent’s contact information and be informed of the scope of the audit. You’ll be asked to provide supporting documents for the review. The auditor may make copies of your records and/or borrow some of your documents. The agent will discuss with you any questions that arise during the audit and address your concerns.

What documents are required for an audit?

The documents requested may include:

  • Business records (ledgers, journals, invoices, receipts, contracts, rental records, bank statements)
  • Personal records (bank statements, mortgage documents, credit card statements)
  • Records of other individuals related to the business (spouse, family members, corporations,    partnerships, trusts)
  • Records from your accountant that relate to the books, records and tax returns of your business

What happens when the audit is complete?

  • The auditor will prepare a schedule of proposed adjustments to your tax assessment including detailed calculations and explanations
  •   The agent will hear and discuss your explanations before closing the audit
  •   You’ll receive a letter explaining the results of the audit
  •   If changes are made, you’ll receive an amended notice of assessment

What do I do if I disagree with the results of the audit?

If you disagree with the reassessment, contact the auditor, explain your concerns and provide documents to support your position. If you are not able to resolve the disagreement, you have the right to appeal.

Filing taxes for a small or medium sized business is a complicated procedure. A CPA will ensure your tax return is complete and accurate, reduce the chances of your file being chosen for an audit and ensure you’re rewarded the deductions you’re entitled.

For all your tax needs contact Cook and Company Accountants. Whether you operate a sole proprietorship or a sizable corporation with multiple subsidiaries, Cook and Company uses their experience and expertise to make tax time a breeze. We will assist in dealing with the CRA in the event of an audit. Contact us for a complimentary consultation.

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